Saturday, December 20, 2008


This night we visited Spain. I love tapas. But I like to balance with lots of vegetable dishes - tapas can be pretty meat-heavy.

Gambas al Ajillo
I made this dish twice - I think I burned the garlic the first time. But it was kind of nice making it twice, one because it's so easy, and then two because there's only four shrimp and I wanted more!

Cook garlic, red pepper flakes, and sea salt in olive oil over moderately low heat, until garlic is pale golden, about 4-5 minutes. Increase heat to moderately high, then add shrimpa nd saute, until shrimp are just cooked through, 3-4 minutes. Finish with lemon juice.

So simple and so good!

Borrego en la Parilla con Salsa Romesco I don't really think the sauce is supposed to look like this... but Chef K said that's how he likes it.

Sweat garlic until fragrant and light brown. Remove and add bread slice and fry until golden. Remove and gently fry the almonds. Remove and cool oil. Place garlic, bread and almonds in mortar and pestle and work to form a paste. Add peeled and roasted red pepper, tomato, paprika, and cayene pepper and continue to work into a paste (we used the blender). Add vinegar. Slowly drizzle in oil to form an emulsion, adjust seasoning with salt. Should be the consistency of a light mayo. Serve over grilled lamb steaks.


Looks good, right? I didn't actually have any of this - I was getting restless by the time it finished cooking.

Warm the while wine and add saffron, steep for 10 minutes. In a separate pan, sear chicken (leg, breast, and thigh) to golden brown on all sides. Remove. Repeat with sausage (andouille or chorizo, bias cut), then remove. Add onion and garlic, sweat to golden, add rice and paprika, toast for one minute, then deglaze with tomato. Degalze with wine mixture. Add stock, chicen and sausage to pan. Cover. Simmer paella until liquid is absorbed and rice is tender. In last 8 minutes, add red pepper, mussels, clams and shrimp. Arrange the seafood, chicken, and sausage, alternating in a spiral around the dish. Add peas just before serving.

Serve in dishcooked in. Garnish with parslep and a dollop of Aioli in the center of the dish.

Oh, and by the way, it was my birthday! Whoops, I have clearly been too busy to post, since my birthday is in the middle of November...

Here's what Irish brought me:

Not to be ungrateful. But. Pound cake is nice. But it's not my "favorite" cake like she claimed I told her. Just because it's low fat doesn't mean it's healthy - it's loaded with sugar! And, really, I guess yellow cake would be my favorite. With pilsbury frosting. It tastes like cake. Like my memories of cake. But whatever - she claimed I mentioned that one night. Considering I haven't eaten pound cake in years, and she never asked me what kind of cake I wanted, I'm going to guess that she misremembered. What I do like, though, is all the fruit on the cake. That is my idea of a good dessert!

But the whipped cream Chef K made for me tasted excellent. Whipped cream and strawberries. Yum!

Lessons Learned:

I'm starting to get a little... I don't know. I go through these stages where I don't know if I can trust people. And I'm just starting to doubt my friendship with Irish and Tennessee. I just don't think we're really friends. For example, this cake - compare it to what she made Rico or Tennessee. Or Nemo. Which, whatever, if she doesn't really consider me a friend, that's okay, that's the beauty of adulthood is you get to choose your friends. But there's no need to fake it, and I'm pretty sure that's what they're doing with me. Granted, I have major trust issues, but usually I'm pretty right about who is faking it. 6 months. 5 nights a week. That's a lot of time to spend with the same people. But it is possible to be friendly without pretending to be a friend. True, I am writing this months later, with lots more history to support this theory. You'll see when I get around to January.

Anyway. Spain has good food! I've been wanting to visit Spain for years. Someday...

No comments: